Kriehuber, Joseph

Kriehuber, Joseph (b. Vienna, 14 December 1800; d. Vienna, 30 May 1876). Painter and lithographer. He concentrated increasingly on portraits, of which he lithographed some 3,000 in the course of a highly successful career which reached its most brilliant period in 1840-50. His subjects included members of the imperial family, noblemen, scholars, writers, musicians, actors, and artists. Among the musicians were Carl Czerny,* Diabelli,* Haslinger,* Lanner, Liszt,* Paganini, Rossini,* Schubert,* Sechter,* Johann Strauss the Younger, and Beethoven. Although, as far as is known, he never met Beethoven, he was to make at least six lithographs of him, all of them after his death. The earliest, which probably dates from 1827, is based on one of Anton Dietrichs* busts. The following year Kriehuber’s name appears on a portrait featured in the Beethoven biography of Johann Aloys Schlosser (Prague, 1828); another lithograph, done in 1841, recreates Stielers* portrait, while a third (1865) is based on Mahlers 1804/5 portrait. Particularly appreciated was the lithograph published by Haslinger in 1832. Rita Steblin believes that it was based on a drawing by Joseph Hochenccker,* but according to Sieghard Brandenburg a more likely model was the portrait executed by Johann Stephan Decker* in 1824 (see the article on Hochenecker). The same lithograph served as the frontispiece of Ignaz von Seyfried's* Ludwig van Beethoven's Studien im Generalbasse, Contrapuncte und in der Compositionslehre, which appeared in 1832, and was furthermore shown on the title page of Ignaz Castelli's* Allgemeiner musikalischer Anzeiger that year. The anonymous author of an article in the Leipzig Allgemeine musikalische Zeitung (14 January 1835) was to praise this lithograph as the ‘best likeness’ of Beethoven; but if Steblin is correct in surmising that the writer was none other than the publisher of the lithograph, Tobias Haslinger, the judgement may not be entirely objective.